Why metacognition?

Metacognition is a way to increase rates of progress and raises attainment for all pupils, but has a disproportionate impact on disadvantaged pupils helping to close the attainment gap. It is a rising tide that lifts all ships. Successful pupils are highly metacognitive. All pupils can develop their metacognitive skills! Download this useful summary.

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You will find on this site a selection of resources to support teachers and leaders in integrating metacognition into the everyday classroom; explanations, examples, lesson resources, links and more. Divided into 'areas of focus', the resources support teachers in developing pupils' metacognitive skills.


Leadership role

As with most educational developments, hard work, strong leadership and a coordinated approach are required for metacognition to reap the promised rewards. Find out more about the practical steps leaders can take to develop metacognition. A range of resources are provided to support school wide development of metacognition.



"Metacognition is a critically important, yet often overlooked component of learning. I hope these resources will support teachers and leaders in helping pupils to become highly metacognitive. When leaders across schools work together we have a real chance of closing the gap for disadvantaged pupils, of which metacognition is an important strand."
Vicky Crane, Independent Consultant and Trainer


A project with Leeds Local Authority Secondary School Improvement team led to a range of resources being produced to support the development of metacognition. This site captures many of the key elements of this project. Subject Leader Development Meetings led by school based subject leaders across the city allowed subjects to put their own 'spin' on metacognition. School based leaders devoted professional development time and energy into considering how metacognition could be integrated into their everyday subject teaching. Whilst teaching metacognition as a separate element can have impact, the greatest impact is seen when it is threaded into all lessons.

In addition to subject leaders considering how metacognition can be developed in their subject, senior leaders looked at the whole school picture. Metacognition is a high impact strategy for raising attainment and increasing rates of progress, but it is a vast area of study and difficult to implement across a school. Teachers and leaders need to have an in-depth understanding of metacognition in order to see how they can harness its power. Resources on this site are aimed at supporting a strategic approach to the development of metacognition.

It was a pleasure to work with Leeds Local Authority in a freelance capacity to support Learning and Teaching Specialists develop metacognition. I have worked with some amazing people who work tirelessly to provide outstanding educational experiences for the children of Leeds. The professional conversations, the shared ideas, and the pooling of expert knowledge has helped to amass a great resource bank. A wealth of training and Subject Leader Development Meetings have been provided, through the Leeds Learning Partnership, but those involved recognise that we are on the first leg of a longer journey. To support schools in continuing this journey, this site aims to collate tools and resources schools have been using as the 'starting blocks' which subject teachers have then adapted, developed and redesigned in order to integrate them into subject lessons. We hope by having this site, leaders and teachers can consider where their own practice is in terms of 'emerging, developing, secure, innovating'. They can consider the different elements of metacognition and use the basic blocks to build on from their current position.


The Leeds Learning Partnership has been fundamental in enabling leaders to work together, share ideas and develop metacognition with a subject focus. Across the fourteen Subject Leader Development Networks, teachers have grappled with elements such as 'exam wrappers' and 'plan-monitor-check' and have started to increase their use of metacognition. For more information about the Leeds Learning Partnership visit www.leedsforlearning.co.uk

Resources for leaders

Vital resources for leaders can be found here...leadership

Resources for subject leaders & teachers

Resources for subject leaders and teachers can be found here... resources


Going beyond this site, you can find useful links here...

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